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View Full Version : Sea-to-Summit lightweight or ultra-sill dry sack for food bag?



Kulliman
02-18-2017, 11:56
Many people say they have used the Sea to Summit dry bags for food bagging when thru hiking the AT, but I see Sea-to-Summit has both a Lightweight dry sack and an ultra-sill dry sack. I was wondering if it makes a difference which one I use? Also, how big are these actually? I have been using an outdoor recreation group yellow bag from Walmart that measures 10.75" x 21" when flattened out. It is about 6.5" diameter x 19" fully loaded which transfers to about 10.33 liters (I think Amazon.com says 8 Liters in their specs). It seems that some people say to use the S2S 13 Liter or the 20 Liter bags. REI shows those bags as 8.5 x 21 for 13 liter and 10x24 for 20 liter. Are the 8.5 and 10 the diameter or half the circumference (bag flattened out)? I'm just trying to compare the sea-to-summit bag sizes to the outdoor recreation group bags that I am already using and which have been fine for me for short trips.

HooKooDooKu
02-18-2017, 13:11
I was recently disappoint when an over night rain (not down pour, but rain) left the inside of my Sea to Summit Ultra-sil dry sack wet on the inside. Fortunately all of my food was also in ziplocks. So I didn't have soggy food on that trip. But I was greatly disappointed that a sack labeled as "dry" couldn't keep its contents dry.

While a little bit heavier, you might want to consider the Sea to Summit eVac Dry Sack. I like that it comes with a D ring.

MuddyWaters
02-18-2017, 13:33
have you seen a 5.4" diameter by 21" long bag thats 13L?

me neither

Kulliman
02-18-2017, 15:06
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that I normally put my food in a Loksak Opsak 12.5" x 20" Food storage bag and put that in the "dry" bag.
So, HooKooDooKu (love that trail name, BTW) what is the actual size of the S2S bag that you use when laid flat and which one is it advertised as?

Dogwood
02-18-2017, 16:13
Sounds like you had the Walter's Wild World 10 L sack. The specs for the various c2S sacks are given at the web site. Plug in the volume sack and the length, width and height updates. However they are cyclindrical in shape.

Volume of the sack you want determines roughly how many day's chow you're planning roughly between resupplies if you desire to store all your food minus a days snacks in the sack. Opting for densely able packed foods(tiny pastas(ditalini, orzo, oatmeal) verse large(Ziti, Cheerios), repackaging eliminating packaging volume and package wt into Ziplocs with a small rubber band translates to a smaller volume food sack. I do these things getting 6 maybe 7 days food at 3400-3700 cal/day into a 8 L c2S Ultra Sil Nano sack. A 20 L food sack sounds like quite bit of days foodand/or very bulky foods. AT resupply pts are extremely well documented.

My c2S sacks with the fold down top and snapped with a buckle have never leaked although I have had to replace them periodically as they wear out, get chewed through, the fold down stiffener breaks through the fabric, etc.The buckled sack creates a hang pt for bear bagging.

IMO, whether food is repackaged into Ziploc's or not, whether a pack liner is used or not I want my food sack to be highly WR for backpacking/hiking which translates into fresher food, lower residual food odors on other pieces of gear, and when I need to hang food outside of my pack.

KTX
02-18-2017, 21:40
I was recently disappoint when an over night rain (not down pour, but rain) left the inside of my Sea to Summit Ultra-sil dry sack wet on the inside. Fortunately all of my food was also in ziplocks. So I didn't have soggy food on that trip. But I was greatly disappointed that a sack labeled as "dry" couldn't keep its contents dry.

While a little bit heavier, you might want to consider the Sea to Summit eVac Dry Sack. I like that it comes with a D ring.

From my time in outdoor retail I believe Sea to Summit recommends double bagging if your ultra sil dry bag will be submerged or exposed to wet conditions for long periods of time. Definitely a little misleading, and I do not believe it's on the packaging.

Glad it didn't ruin your food, nothing like soggy tortillas!

Dogwood
02-18-2017, 22:08
I don't see Sea to Summit being misleading at all! We're talking about backpacking stuff sack apps here not paddling trips or where submersion is the norm. For paddling, climbing up waterfalls, wet climbing, super wet backpacking locations, possibly Arctic expeditions, etc Sea to Summit makes heavier quality and DRY AS A BONE Dry Sacks. Sea to Summit's dry bag line's dry bag descriptions make it clear what different sacks are designed.

Dogwood
02-18-2017, 22:13
In essence what you describe as double bagging of items such as food or non hydrophobic down gear is accomplished in backpacking when backpackers incorporate seam sealed cuben fiber/Dyneema Composite backpacks, WP backpacks, use pack liners and/or pack covers, and/or Ziploc food. This can amount to 2-4 layers of protection from water for food and gear.

MuddyWaters
02-18-2017, 22:38
I uses a 0.5 oz turkey bag as liner in my foodbag
it greatly reduces smells to my nose, particularly the garbage bag if it has tuna packets in it.
and its water proof
lasts forever, very tough
I cut hole in bottom of my food bag for water that gets in top, to drain out
you dont want to find a hanging foodbag full of a 1/2 gallon of water after night of heavy rain.....

KTX
02-18-2017, 23:24
I don't see Sea to Summit being misleading at all! We're talking about backpacking stuff sack apps here not paddling trips or where submersion is the norm. For paddling, climbing up waterfalls, wet climbing, super wet backpacking locations, possibly Arctic expeditions, etc Sea to Summit makes heavier quality and DRY AS A BONE Dry Sacks. Sea to Summit's dry bag line's dry bag descriptions make it clear what different sacks are designed.

I agree but when 8/10 customers see the word dry bag they believe it will keep their cell phones dry for whatever purpose necessary, which is why the sales associate is there to tell them what you just typed.

Kulliman
02-18-2017, 23:57
I might just have to go to REI and measure for myself. I emailed REI and they said:

"Thank you for contacting REI about the Sea to Summit Lightweight Dry Sack.The Dimensions of the 13 liter sack when laid flat are 8.5 x 21 inches.The dimensions for the 20 liter sack when laid flat are 10 x 24 inches. The length is determined when the bags are laying flat and fully out-stretched. The Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Dry Sack do in fact carry the same dimensions and are just a different fabric."

This is different than what the S2S website says. S2S says the 8.5" on the 13 liter and the 10" on the 20 liter is the diameter not the width when laid flat as REI had stated. I'm guessing S2S claimed sizes are correct and that REI did not actually measure the the items. the Z-Packs food bag that a lot of people use are 12.39 liters, so I will maybe consider keeping my 10.33 liter Outdoor Recreation Group bag or purchase the S2S 13 liter bag. 20 liter bag would be way over kill IMO. Now, the question is, S2S Lightweight Dry Sack or S2S Ultra-Sil Dry sack. Are they both durable enough for a thru hike?

Saprogenic
02-19-2017, 20:55
I might just have to go to REI and measure for myself. I emailed REI and they said:

"Thank you for contacting REI about the Sea to Summit Lightweight Dry Sack.The Dimensions of the 13 liter sack when laid flat are 8.5 x 21 inches.The dimensions for the 20 liter sack when laid flat are 10 x 24 inches. The length is determined when the bags are laying flat and fully out-stretched. The Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Dry Sack do in fact carry the same dimensions and are just a different fabric."

This is different than what the S2S website says. S2S says the 8.5" on the 13 liter and the 10" on the 20 liter is the diameter not the width when laid flat as REI had stated. I'm guessing S2S claimed sizes are correct and that REI did not actually measure the the items. the Z-Packs food bag that a lot of people use are 12.39 liters, so I will maybe consider keeping my 10.33 liter Outdoor Recreation Group bag or purchase the S2S 13 liter bag. 20 liter bag would be way over kill IMO. Now, the question is, S2S Lightweight Dry Sack or S2S Ultra-Sil Dry sack. Are they both durable enough for a thru hike?


For a longer hike, I'd go with the lightweight one over the ultrasil. The ultrasil is very thin and delicate material. I think the other one would hold up much better.

UofDoboe
02-20-2017, 00:58
I switched to a 13L Lightweight sack about 1/4 of the way throught my thru last year. It held up well, apart from a mouse chewing a hole in it the one night I didn't hang. Patched up well. Get a bright color - I found myself retrieving it in the pre-dawn darkness regularly and a bright color helped my headlamp find it.

I used the ultra-sil for the dry bag for my sleeping bag. I would not trust one as a food back - seems delicate. My food back was in & out of the pack often, on the ground, in a tree, hitting branches etc etc etc. It was worth it in my book to get a slightly beefier bag than the ultra-sil.

hyperhiker
02-20-2017, 13:29
Something to think about is how accessible stuff is in your food bag. Tall and narrow bags may cause you to dump everything out to find what you are looking for. I have an old basic silnylon stuff sack that has been my food bag for years. It is over sized which makes it easy to rummage through. It has a couple of small holes from abrasion and had been put through the wash a dozen or more time. It is not waterproof by any means but I have my food in ziplocks any way and have an odor proof I can line it with if I want. At 1.25 oz. it is lighter weight then ZPacks and S2S Usil I was considering. It may not make it the whole thru hike but then I'll just buy another one.

MuddyWaters
02-20-2017, 16:03
At 1.25 oz. it is lighter weight then ZPacks and S2S Usil I was considering.

Guess again.
I have two zpacks blast foodbags (drawstring)
0.85 oz

1.25 oz? How do you survive???

HooKooDooKu
02-20-2017, 21:31
I don't see Sea to Summit being misleading at all! We're talking about backpacking stuff sack apps here not paddling trips or where submersion is the norm. For paddling, climbing up waterfalls, wet climbing, super wet backpacking locations, possibly Arctic expeditions, etc Sea to Summit makes heavier quality and DRY AS A BONE Dry Sacks. Sea to Summit's dry bag line's dry bag descriptions make it clear what different sacks are designed.
How can it NOT be misleading to labeling a sack as a "dry sack" if it can't protect the contents from rain?

The only thing the sack's description highlights is that it's not intended for boating/marine (submersion) use... and that makes sense as submersion creates additional hydrodynamic forces.

MuddyWaters
02-20-2017, 21:56
How can it NOT be misleading to labeling a sack as a "dry sack" if it can't protect the contents from rain?
.

How can it not be misleading to sell a sleeping bag liner and claim "up to 15 F"?

CalebJ
02-20-2017, 22:19
Up to 15 at least includes the possibility of nothing at all. 'Dry' implies that the contents should stay dry. Sounds like at least one person has had the opposite experience from simple rain exposure. I wouldn't expect it to handle prolonged submersion, but it ought to be able to handle train.

hyperhiker
02-21-2017, 00:44
Their site claims 1.4 oz. If it is really .85 oz I'll have to cut holes in my food bag. Sure is hell not carrying the .4 oz.

MuddyWaters
02-21-2017, 07:29
Up to 15 at least includes the possibility of nothing at all. 'Dry' implies that the contents should stay dry. Sounds like at least one person has had the opposite experience from simple reason exposure. I wouldn't expect it to handle prolonged submersion, but it ought to be able to handle train.

If its drier than nothing at all, some claim is valid as far as water repellent abilities

How do you differentiate degrees of protection, without applicable standards?

Dogwood
02-21-2017, 08:55
HKDK, never had any c2S dry sacks, which is all I've ever used in 12 yrs get my food wet either in my pack or when hung in torrential rains. My experiences are different. The only time I could see the ultra sil dry sacks, reg or Nano, susceptible to leakage under backpacking scenarios is when they are overly packed not allowing for the fold down top to be properly closed and clasped or when a hole has abraded through the fabric or the seam taped dry sacks have had the seam tape loosened. Do you see any of those issues in your analysis? :)

CalebJ
02-21-2017, 09:54
HKDK, never had any c2S dry sacks, which is all I've ever used in 12 yrs get my food wet either in my pack or when hung in torrential rains. My experiences are different. The only time I could see the ultra sil dry sacks, reg or Nano, susceptible to leakage under backpacking scenarios is when they are overly packed not allowing for the fold down top to be properly closed and clasped or when a hole has abraded through the fabric or the seam taped dry sacks have had the seam tape loosened. Do you see any of those issues in your analysis? :)

Glad to have your experience as a counterpoint. Need to pick up a new dry bag myself so I'll take a chance on another one based on that. Hopefully it will do as well as yours have.

macdiver
04-07-2017, 21:59
Check out Zpacks Bear bag kit. It's 50 bucks and includes the right kind of rope, a carabiner and the rock bag. It's rectangular and easy to get to your food without having to pour the contents of the bag out to find something. I'is cuben fiber and only weighs 3oz for the whole rig.

I looked for about 3 hrs today and the 13L S2S eVac (air squeezes out the bottom) is no less than $24 anywhere and that's before shipping. The Zpacks bag its self is $39 and weighs 1.4 oz and is 12.3L. The eVac weighs 2.4.

I'm ordering the bear bag kit. Look at Bigfoot's video how to hang a bear bag PCT style.

http://www.zpacks.com/accessories/bear_bag.shtml